Kuwait Finance House (Singapore) Pte Ltd opens for business
- Kuwait: Thursday, June 26 - 2008 at 14:09
- PRESS RELEASE
Kuwait Finance House (Malaysia) Berhad (KFHMB) is pleased to announce the opening of its first subsidiary outside of Malaysia. H.E. Dr Yaakoob Ibrahim, Minister for the Environment, Water Resources and Muslim Affairs of Singapore graced the event and officiated the Singapore office.
Also present were Mr Shaheen Alghanem, the Chairman of KFHMB.
Kuwait Finance House (Singapore) Pte Ltd (KFHS) is a wholly-owned subsidiary of KFHMB established on 6 November 2007.
KFHS has received acknowledgement from the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) on 18 March 2008 for the commencement of its fund management activities.
The Singapore operation is headed by its Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Dr. Lim Boh Soon.
Over the next two years, KFHS will manage existing Shariah-compliant funds as well as new funds of the KFH Group targeted at both the corporate and retail customers.
Mr Shaheen Alghanem commented: "We are pleased that our operation in Singapore has been officially launched, testament of our commitment in the Asia-Pacific region. Our sincere gratitude to the H.E. Dr Yaakoob Ibrahim for his gracious consent to officiate the launch of our office and our utmost appreciation to the Government of Singapore for promoting Islamic finance and supporting KFH."
The Chairman's contentment at the progress of KFHMB since its inception and the latest subsidiary launch in Singapore is echoed by Dato' K. Salman Younis, Managing Director of KFHMB, during his opening speech.
Dato' Salman also thanked the Monetary Authority of Singapore for approving the licence for Kuwait Finance House (Singapore) Pte Ltd to operate in the beautiful City State.
He thanked the Embassies of Kuwait and Malaysia in Singapore for their assistances in the establishment of the Singapore office.
"Kuwait Finance House is delighted with the support shown by the Government of Singapore to promote Islamic finance. KFH looks forward to contribute to the growth of the global fund management market in Singapore, as well as the rest of the Asia-Pacific region," said Dato' Salman in his opening address. "Our role here is to undertake the management of regional funds sponsored by the KFH Group by providing Shariah-compliant investments across multiple asset classes in Asia to investors and the KFH Group."
Meanwhile Dr Lim Boh Soon also acknowledged the support shown by the Government of Singapore in facilitating the promotion of Islamic finance in the country.
"KFHS is looking forward to participate in the growth of Islamic finance here and shall strive to increase the awareness of the availability of this additional mode of finance."
Dato' Salman emphasised that the great potential for Singapore to become a major wealth management centre as one of the factors which encouraged the opening of KFHS.
"We are also attracted by the assurance from MAS that its business framework comprising tax, regulations, supervision and market access are of high standards and encourage innovation."
Dato' Salman noted that the stance by the Government of Singapore towards Islamic finance will further lift Singapore's status as an international financial centre, capable of offering a wide range of products and services.
Last February, MAS has announced the granting of a 5% concessionary tax rate for any activity which qualifies as Shariah compliant under its Qualifying Debt Securities Scheme.
"This is great news for Sukuk investors, who will be tax exempted for their income from Sukuk," said Dato' Salman.
"KFH Group is not really new in Singapore. A company managed by the Private Equity Department of KFHMB has partnered Pacific Healthcare Holdings, Singapore's healthcare provider which offers a comprehensive range of healthcare services, and acquired a strategic stake in Radlink Asia Pte Ltd, one of the largest independent providers of diagnostic imaging and radiography services in Singapore," he highlighted.
"Private Equity is also involved in SI Consolidated Sdn Bhd (SIC), which is among the largest integrated metal stamping parts manufacturer and assembler in the South East Asia region, with operations in Singapore, Malaysia and China."
SIC produces a wide range of precision metal component parts for various industries including automated teller machines, printers, point-of-sale equipments, computer components, machinery, power supply and automotive components.
KFH Group has also purchased two villa apartment blocks in Reflections at Keppel Bay, and has recently purchased 36 apartment units of the luxurious Goodwood Residence.
More recently was the deal to arrange Islamic financing facilities for TPL India Singapore Pte. Ltd. (TPLIS).
This is a landmark deal being the first Islamic project finance transaction in Singapore.
The project is for the manufacture of normal paraffin and is located in Jurong Island.
"These transactions and partnerships are testimonials of what we can offer to our customers and have paved the way for GCC-based Islamic Banks to look into new markets like Singapore," Dato' Salman remarked. "Our commitment is to accomplish the highest levels of quality through the products we offer, services we provide and the procedures we follow."
With the strong backing from KFH - Kuwait, KFHS is geared up to explore new areas where it can contribute significantly to the advancement of the Islamic finance industry in Singapore. "We hope that more doors will be opened and that KFH can achieve new milestones in Singapore," concluded Dato' Salman.
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